Beginning in the 1630s and 1640s, it was from this area that Jesuit priests conducted missionary activities, while also seeing to the religious needs of the colony’s first settlers. From as long ago as the 17th century, Southern Maryland has been an area with deep and strong roots in the story of religious freedom in America and Maryland. The St. Francis Xavier Church and Newtowne Manor House in St. Mary’s County represents an example of a self-contained, self-supporting Jesuit community. Unfortunately, the majority of the diverse buildings on the site have suffered from disuse, with broken windows, wildlife, and water penetrating through the historic foundation.
Preservation Maryland will support our partners at the recently established Friends of Newtowne Manor House through fundraising development, capacity building, and statewide public awareness. We will also provide technical assistance to assess the current condition of the building and determine what is required for its immediate stabilization, as well as identifying potential future uses.